It’s often tricky to know what can make you stand out in a sea of qualified candidates. Combine this with the added pressure of bringing something unique to your interview and suddenly preparing for that all important interview can become quite stressful. Although we’re not averse to pulling out all the stops when it comes to impressing in your interview, there are some simple steps you can take to show your serious about the job.
#1 Arrive Early Arriving early to your interview is a priority and it demonstrates to your potential employer your eagerness to impress and shows you care about punctuality. It’s important though to consider the type of company you are interviewing at. A larger company will have a reception area and meeting room which means arriving early is not a problem. If it’s only a small company, you may consider arriving early to a nearby cafe, before arriving at the company only 5 minutes early. Arriving early gives you the opportunity to collect your thoughts, go over any notes you’ve made and go into your interview calm and confident.
#2 Be The One To Start The Conversation It’s all too easy to quietly follow your interviewer into the meeting room and tentatively sit down before any conversation starts. Instead, why not try settling your nerves (and avoid the inevitable worry of overthinking your answers) with a prepared ice breaker to initiate conversation. Your interviewer will most likely be delighted that you have the confidence to engage in conversation from the start.
#3 Be Authentic
It’s common to portray an ‘interview persona’ when in an interview situation and may not be a true representation of the real you. It’s advisable to show off your best personality traits and find the right balance between being yourself and staying professional. It’s also tempting to just agree with your interviewer, however try to be authentic and real with your answers. A potential employer will appreciate your open conversation and recognise that it demonstrates maturity and honesty.
#4 Do Your Research It’s important to always research the company before your interview. During the interview there will no doubt be an opportunity to show you have done your research on areas such as their services, customers or products. Showing that you took the initiative to learn more about the company, demonstrates that you are willing to do extra and are serious about the job. It allows you the opportunity to articulate how your skills, values and knowledge are inline with those of the company and its industry.
#5 Show You Can Solve Their Problems So you’ve asked insightful questions and opened up the conversation enough to discuss a company's current pain points. Now to show your potential employer how you can help to eliminate these problems. It's important to remember at this point, not to hastily rattle off a half-baked strategy but instead opt for demonstrating a time where you solved a similar problem in your previous employment and explain how your skills, knowledge and commitment were a key contributor.